Feel Like a Chat?
Working from a home office is odd. Fabulous ... but odd. When I work in the "office office" where most of my co-workers put in their 40-plus, I can close my office door and soak in the solitude. If I'm feeling a little cut off, I can open it and just listen to the ambient chatter. Or if I really feel the need to commune with my fellows, I can actually walk out of my office and into a conversation about fundraising, or publishing, or diets, or sports, or just about anything. No one really needs anything from me, so I can chat a spell and then climb back into work mode on my own terms.
But working at home is different. My life is blessedly filled with people, just doing their things and being their positively marvelous selves. Yet when I'm holed up in my home office, I can be as isolated as if I were on a deserted island. On days like that, if I venture out of the parameters of my workspace, there's a certain neediness to the conversations that's harder to break away from than at the office office. What are we doing for dinner? What is that the cat just threw up? Does this hair color match my tattoo? There's not a lot of talk about fundraising going on, and extricating myself often takes a lot of finesse and the verbal equivalent of a shot of WD-40.
The solution for those days when I need to talk fundraising while not straying too far from the work agenda is social media, of course. Say what you will about the time-wasteability factor of Facebook or the whirlwind pace of Twitter ... they can be terrific tools. Sure, there will always be people filling my queue with mundane, sometimes moronic status updates (I would never do that, of course ... pfffft), but it's easy enough to dig through them and connect more closely with certain people.